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IIM budget blooper: ‘Typo error’ leaves HRD red-faced

Rajasthan was sneaked into the list of new IIMs instead of Chhatisgarh in the interim budget by virtue of a mistake on the part of the HRD ministry.

Written by Anubhuti Vishnoi | New Delhi |
February 17, 2009 11:32:32 am

A day after the interim budget announced an IIM for Rajasthan starting this academic session,even though the state did not figure in the list of those slated one of the six new IIMs in the 11th plan period,the Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry is left red-faced.

It is learnt that Rajasthan was sneaked into the list of new IIMs instead of Chhatisgarh in the interim budget by virtue of a mistake and oversight on the part of the HRD ministry. Realizing the faux pas only after the budget was announced,the ministry got into a late night meeting to decide how to rectify the damage done. Incidentally,while several attempts were made to reach HRD ministry officials for a clarification on the issue on Monday,they were unavailable for comment.

It is learnt that the ministry has taken up the matter with the Finance ministry and has requested them to appraise the Parliament of the IIM mistakenly attributed to Rajasthan instead of Chhatisgarh.

In all likelihood,a corrigendum will be issued to clarify the government’s position on the issue as the HRD ministry had maintained so far that either an IIT or IIM would be allocated to states under the 11th plan period and not both. Since Rajasthan already has an IIT allocated to it last year and it is already operating from the IIT Kanpur campus where it is being mentored,the mention of an IIM also for the state in Pranab Mukherjee’s budget speech took all by surprise including the Arjun Singh led HRD ministry. An embarrassed ministry swung into damage control on Monday evening but was unable to issue any clarification since it was a budget announcement made in the parliament.

The Finance ministry,will now,apprise the parliament of the mistake,it is learnt. The inadvertent mistake also led to speculations that the IIM proposed for Chhatisgarh as announced by the HRD ministry last year would be axed to make way for one in Rajasthan.

The interim Budget unveiled on Monday announced that four of the six new IIMs planned for the 11th plan period would be located in Haryana,Rajasthan,Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu and would start their academic session in 2009-10. While Haryana,Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu were among the six states earlier earmarked by the HRD Ministry for an IIM,Rajasthan had been given an IIT in keeping with the idea that a state should have either an IIT or IIM. The other states on the Ministry’s IIM list included Jammu & Kashmir,Uttarakhand and Chhattisgarh.

Teaching is expected to commence from academic year 2009-10 in four out of six new Indian Institutes of Management proposed for the Eleventh Plan in Haryana,Rajasthan,Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu,Pranab Mukherjee,who holds the additional charge of Finance,said.

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